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Besides a jolt of caffeine to get you through your day, a long-term study shows that coffee may have additional ‘perks’…

Researchers say an inflammation-lowering effect of the beverage could be the reason coffee drinkers were 54 percent less likely to develop type 2 diabetes as non-coffee drinkers, as reported in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Between 2001-2002, more than 1,300 men and women in Athens, Greece, were selected to participate in the study. The random sampling included 816 ‘casual’ drinkers – consuming less than 1.5 daily cups of coffee, 385 ‘habitual’ drinkers – who drank more than 1.5 cups per day, and 239 non-coffee drinkers.featured-cropped-heart-coffee-CC-AhmedRabea

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Participants had blood tests to evaluate protein levels – which are markers of inflammation, and antioxidant levels – which indicate the body’s ability to neutralize cell-damaging “free radicals”. Ten years later, 191 people had developed diabetes. The study showed those who reported higher coffee consumption had lower likelihoods of developing the disease, even after accounting for smoking, high blood pressure, and family history of diabetes.

According to researchers, levels of serum amyloid, an inflammatory marker in the blood, pointed to a connection between coffee and diabetes. Higher consumption of the beverage went along with lower amyloid levels.

Demosthenes B. Panagiotakos, Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics at Harokopio University in Athens, Greece, told Reuters, “Oxidative stress has been shown to accelerate the dysfunction of pancreatic b-cells and antioxidants intake has been shown to decrease diabetes risk, so the antioxidant components of coffee may be beneficial, but still more research is needed toward this direction.”

(READ more at Reuters) – Photo: rockindave1

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